Need to know
- Dyson and LG are two leading brands in the world of stick vacuums, each with a range of products at different prices
- Stick vacuums can be expensive, but a good stick vac can be a huge help for day-to-day cleaning
- CHOICE experts regularly test stick vacuums in our labs so we can publish detailed reviews on each model and help you decide which one is right for you. Our reviews are available to CHOICE members
The name Dyson is almost synonymous with stick vacuums – it's the must-have brand with an instantly-recognisable aesthetic. If you're in the market for a stick vac, a Dyson is almost certainly on your wishlist, and we get it: Dyson dominates the stick vacuum market.
But big brands often come with big prices, and Dyson is no exception. With RRPs ranging from $749 to $1699, they're often out of reach for many budgets.
While Dyson's reputation is generally well-founded, here at CHOICE we know that buying based on brand alone is sometimes a recipe for disappointment: even the best brand sometimes delivers duds.
Focusing solely on one brand can mean you overlook other products offering comparable performance for a much smaller price tag
And focusing solely on one brand in your search for the perfect appliance can mean you overlook other products offering comparable performance for a much smaller price tag.
LG may be better known for its fridges and TVs than its vacuums, but it's steadily increased its presence in the stick vacuum market. And LG stick vacs are scoring well in our testing, giving Dyson a run for its money in terms of performance.
So, is an LG stick vacuum worth adding to your shortlist?
Dyson vs LG: Which brand is best?
Deciding which stick vacuum is right for you comes down to a number of factors, such as your budget, how you plan to use it, and what features and accessories you'd like.
It's also important to consider the brand itself, including things like how reliable it is, the brand's track record in customer service and customer satisfaction, and whether technical support or repair is available if something goes wrong.
LG produces a range of products from fridges and TVs to washing machines and computers, but is a relative newcomer to the world of stick vacuums (particularly in comparison with Dyson). But as a large company it has a track record of producing good-quality products, and the budget and skills to develop new products well.
By contrast, Dyson dedicates a significant proportion of its business on making vacuums, and in 2018 announced it is focusing only on cordless models and not developing any new corded vacuum cleaners. So you might say they're an expert in stick vacuums.
You're unlikely to be disappointed with either an LG or a Dyson stick vac, especially if you do your research to find the best model for your needsAdrian Lini, CHOICE test expert
"Dyson and LG stick vacuums both tend to perform well in our tests," says CHOICE test expert Adrian Lini.
"Of course this does vary from model to model, but they're both great brands that often deliver good performance.
"You're unlikely to be disappointed with either an LG or a Dyson stick vac, especially if you do your research to find the best model for your needs."
Overall brand vs individual model
It's important to bear in mind that in CHOICE testing, performance of specific product models may vary quite significantly, so don't assume that one brand's products are the best in terms of the many different features, functions and price points.
The best thing to do is focus on individual models by checking CHOICE's detailed stick vacuum reviews before you buy.
Range and price
LG and Dyson stick vacs have a similar price point, and a comparable number of models to choose from.
Dyson currently advertises 17 stick vacuum models on its website, priced from $599 RRP for the Dyson Omni-Glide (for hard floors only), up to $1699 RRP for the Dyson Gen5outsize Complete.
At time of writing, the Omni-Glide is on sale on the Dyson website for $547; the Gen5outsize Complete is on sale for $1399.
Because the brand often releases new models, we commonly see older Dyson stick vac models offered at discounted prices. This means that if you're willing to forgo some of the newer features or technology, you can pick up a good deal (but do check our expert stick vacuum reviews first as some Dysons perform better than others).
LG stick vacuums range from around $499 for the LG A9N-SOLO up to around $1599 for the LG A9TMAX. The brand has around 14 models on the market.
(Prices above vary depending on sales and promotions; these figures are indicative only.)
Dyson stick vacs come with some pretty fancy features, but ask yourself if you really need them. Image: Dyson.
What does your money buy you?
Of the two brands, LG stick vacuums tend to come with more accessories, while Dyson stick vacs have more fancy features.
"Dyson is a bit like the Apple of the vacuum world: it's a high-end, well-known brand that everyone has to have, but you'll pay extra for it," says Adrian.
"And despite the expense, you'll generally have to pay extra for accessories or better performance.
"Your money is likely to go further if you buy an LG, since a lot of them include accessories like a spare battery, and since you're not paying for the Dyson brand name."
Are you the kind of person who likes to have every accessory under the sun? Or do you tend to use the same configuration no matter what you're vacuuming?
Accessories can either be a blessing or a curse depending on your perspective: they can make your vacuum more versatile so you can get the most out of it, or they're just another thing you have to find space for in your house.
LG stick vacuums come with quite a number of accessories.
The CordZero A9T-Ultra, for instance, comes with three power heads, a mop head, combination tool, crevice tool, dusting brush, flexible crevice tool, filter cleaning brush, extendable flexible arm, mop heads, mop head holder, measuring cup, battery charger, extra battery (more on that later), tool holder, stand and wall mount with screws.
The all-in-one tower is for storing and charging the vacuum, charging the extra battery, and storing all the accessories.
The flipside of this is that the bags cost nearly $10 each, and they're made from plastic
The most impressive feature, however, is its auto-empty feature which automatically deposits the contents of the bin into a bag within the tower, so you don't need to empty the vacuum as often.
It also contains the dust in a bag so it doesn't fly everywhere when you empty it, which is great news for allergy sufferers. (The flipside of this is a pack of three of the bags has an RRP of almost $40, and they're made from plastic.)
By comparison, the Dyson Gen5detect Absolute comes with three power heads, a combination tool, crevice/dusting brush tool, battery charger, and wall mount with tool holder and screws.
Emptying the bin is easy, but first you need to remove the wand from the body of the vacuum.
The Dyson Gen5detect has an inbuilt crevice/dust tool, which means that you can go from regular to handheld mode by simply removing the wand, as the tool remains attached. This is a handy feature as it makes switching between modes easier, and it's one less accessory that you need to store.
Dyson wall mounts only hold a limited number of accessories, so if you have extras then you'll need to find somewhere else to store them. Or you can pay up to $200 for a Dyson Dok to store your vacuum and tools.
LG stick vacs come with an extra battery, effectively doubling your cleaning time. Image: LG.
The one downside of stick vacuums is that their batteries don't tend to last long: anywhere from five to 15 minutes on high power.
That's usually enough time to give the kitchen a quick once-over, but if you want to do a bigger clean, you'll have to charge the battery back up first.
One major drawcard of the LG stick vacuums is that they're supplied with an extra battery. So once you've used up the juice in the first battery, you can just switch it for the second battery and keep going – which effectively doubles your cleaning time. (Not all models will charge both batteries at once, though, so you'll need to remember to swap in the second battery once the first one's been charged.)
You can buy extra batteries for your Dyson, but they're not cheap: up to $200. And when you've already dropped hundreds of dollars (or even in excess of $1000), that's a lot extra to pay for something that comes standard with an LG.
When you're buying a high-end vacuum, you'd expect to get not only great performance, but also the latest features to make cleaning as easy as possible.
How do Dyson and LG vacuums compare in terms of special features (and do you actually need those features)?
Dyson's latest technologies include a green laser on the hard-floor head that illuminates dirt and dust that may not be easily seen with the naked eye, purportedly to help show you where to target your vacuuming.
The first iteration of this didn't work well in a brightly-lit room, although it has improved with the Gen5detect. It's also not very useful if you're working with a surface that's textured or patterned, as it's hard to tell what's dust and what's just the floor.
It's a cute feature but the novelty may wear off, and it may not necessarily help you clean more effectively.
We can't vouch for how accurate the sensor is, but it seems to be a gimmick that may not actually improve how well you clean
Another new Dyson feature is a display that shows you how much dirt you're picking up from the floor by way of three fluctuating bars that show the volume of small, medium and large particles being removed. You'll know the floor is clean once it starts showing that the vacuum isn't picking up much debris.
We can't vouch for how accurate the sensor is, but it seems to be a gimmick that may not actually improve how well you clean, and we've found it doesn't work particularly well on carpet, which is the surface type it would be most helpful for.
While these are fun features that the LG models don't have (and which may make vacuuming more entertaining!), just remember that they're the kind of thing that bumps up the price. "It's another gimmick that you're paying for," says Adrian.
How we test
CHOICE is famous for our rigorous vacuum testing. We test dirt removal from hard floors, carpets, corners and edges, and car floors.
We suck up cornflakes, potting mix and flour, pet hair, pebbles and sand to simulate common scenarios, and we also rate vacuums on ease of use, noise and battery life.
Learn more about how we test stick vacuums at CHOICE.
Dyson Gen5detect Absolute vs LG CordZero A9T-Ultra
If you're looking for a stick vacuum in the $1500+ realm, these two are probably on your wishlist: they're the top-of-the-line models from both brands.
These models have all the bells and whistles: the LG has an auto-empty feature and second battery, while the Dyson has a fancy laser floor-head to illuminate dust and an LCD screen that shows what size of particle is being picked up.
The Dyson has a longer run time, but the LG's second battery means you can double its run time. They both come with HEPA filters and a host of accessories.
They've both been rigorously tested in our labs with full stick vacuum reviews available exclusively to CHOICE members.
Dyson V12 Detect Slim Absolute vs LG A9N-Multi
If your budget doesn't stretch to the $1500+ models mentioned above, you may be considering these two stick vacs.
They're comparable in many respects, but the LG is slightly better for pet hair, while the Dyson wins out on hard floors.
Again, the LG comes with a second battery, which can double your cleaning time, and its dust collector is twice the size of the Dyson, so you can keep cleaning for longer.
The Dyson is lighter and more compact, though, and comes with the laser floor-head and LCD screen that shows how much debris it's sucking up. (Whether these features are just a gimmick or are genuinely helpful is up for debate.)
You can compare these two models in our detailed stick vacuum reviews. (You'll need to be a CHOICE member to see all the info.)
Stock images: Getty, unless otherwise stated.